What is Natural Parenting?
Countless amounts of research has emerged to state that toxic chemical are everywhere; unknowing to us or the naked eye – put in everything from our food to pillows to body care products. Many of which are known to be harmful, many more of which have unknown health effects. With this in mind, “natural parenting” as a term or a parenting movement has come to refer to a lifestyle a parent(s) is living that strives to avoid many of these contaminated products.
The word natural refers to a lifestyle that is in symbiosis with nature. Therefore Natural Parenting is by extension a reliance on natural sources; non-artificial remedies and preventative methods, like healthy food. Natural Parenting might also include a lifestyle or method of raising kids closer to nature and with an emphasis placed on outdoors learning/exploration. Natural Parents are also concerned with environmental issues and have a firm belief that our kids deserve a clean, healthy planet.
We recommend the book, Natural Parenting & Childcare by Lauren Feder, M.D, which can be purchased [here]. Lauren Feder describes Natural Parenting very specifically and in the following ways. Natural Parenting:
- Recognizes the importance of many age-old traditions that have been successful for generations.
- Reassures parents that they are the best family doctor for first-line defense, while acknowledging the benefits of doctors for serious illness.
- Encourages parents to trust common sense instead of immediately seeking medical advice.
- Discourages blind faith in the medical profession, which is preoccupied with intervention rather than prevention.
- Meets the needs and well being of babies, children, and family in a way that is as natural as possible.
- For simple, self-limiting complaints, relies on remedies and medicines that are safe, non-toxic, and natural with no side effects, rather than on potentially harmful over-the-counter drugs and antibiotics.
- Offers tips and suggestions that are easy to use with practical application.
- Requires no formal training. (Feder, 14)
“Natural medicine is simple. Practical and easy to incorporate into already existing home rituals. If you are a busy parent worried that natural approaches will demand more time and energy than you have, you will likely find that natural parenting proves to be more time and cost efficient than your current habits. In addition, natural remedies are often safer and just, if not more, as effective than conventional prescription drugs.” (Feder, 14)
Natural Parenting for many is also connected to attachment parenting methods and creating an over-all active and loving presence in our children’s lives. It is also an understanding that we learn from our kids as well as teach them. It is a commitment to cooperative and harmonious family-life without violence or other forms of oppressive parenting methods. In short, Natural Parenting is about incorporating nature together with loving-parenting. It is also a belief that we as humans exist within nature and are not separate from it.
Natural Parenting is akin to other forms of parenting, like Mindful Parenting. Mindfulness in Buddhist practices refers to an attentive awareness. Attentive awareness goes hand-in-hand with Natural Parenting.
Musician, Ani DiFranco speaks to Mindful Mamma Magazine below about being a mindful mom.
Attachment parenting is about parenting from a place of encouragement, non-invasive closeness, love and respect. It is also about creating safe environments that foster emotional nourishment and family bonding. Attachment parenting embraces a belief that non-violent parenting can create a peaceful world.
Robin Grille, father and author of Parenting for a Peaceful World, and also Heart to Heart Parenting shares some profound information about children and parenting practices around the world and throughout history. Robin wrote the video below which is narrated by Aja Swafford. To learn more about Robin, visit his website, our-emotional-health.com
View recommended reads on parenting [here].
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